Pros: Good sound quality, inexpensive, easy to use
Cons: LED blinks too brightly at night, not a great fit on the ear
The Bottom Line: The Jabra BT350 is a good inexpensive headset for casual use.
In many states, driving while talking on the phone is illegal. I'm not going to debate the merits of these laws or get on a soapbox for either side of the argument. The law is the law and to obey the law, you need a hands free set and the wireless Bluetooth are the most popular. So I was lucky enough to get a Jabra BT350 for free. Was it worth what I paid for it?
Read on, dear reader...
What it is The Jabra BT350 is a Bluetooth over the ear wireless headset for cellular phones.
Features and Commentary The headset is a small, plastic thing with a rubber ear hook. The light blue and grey design is attractively subtle. The headset is very light and feels almost flimsy. This comes in really handy when the unit is hanging off your ear. The lighter the better.
As far as comfort goes, the unit is pretty good, but not great. The ear hook is rigidly flexible, meaning that you can flex it where you want it and it'll stay. This allows you to mold the hook to your ear for the optimal fit. However, I was never able to get the headset to fit snugly on my ear, If I tilt my head a little, I can feel it wobble and pull away. This is not a big deal since I don't generally flip my head when I drive, but still, if perfect fit is important, this is something to consider.
I connect my headset to a Motorola Razr and the connection process is as simple as can be. The phone finds the headset and I confirm the connection and viola, I'm connected. Once I connected, I used the headset to program the speed dial so it knows what I sound like when using the headset. This was easy as well. In use, however, I often have to repeat the process to get it to understand that "home" means "home". Now, this could be the phone's voice recognition, but chances are, it's the headset not sending it as clearly as it could.
Using and deciphering what the headset is trying to tell you is a lesson in morse code. The blue LED tells you everything you need to know based on the way it blinks. If it blinks once every few seconds, it's in standby. If it blinks once per second, then it's being used (and hopefully on your ear). If it's solid blue, then it's searching for your phone. The different colors it can light up give status of the battery life.
As well, holding down the button or tapping it defines how the headset works. Tap it to receive a call, hold for a second to switch calls. Hold for 5 seconds to turn it off. There are a few more commands based upon the tap/hold functions, but I don't use them all that much. The basic features are easy to remember.
The battery life of the unit is exceptional. I drove all the way from LA to Seattle with it switching between standby and actual use and I made nary a dent in the battery life. I go at least a week in standby mode, so I'm quite happy with the battery life. When I do need to charge the battery, it's done in just a couple of hours.
I've not had any problems with the audio quality. It seems a little quiet, but I can control the volume with the buttons on the bottom. I've talked to other cel phones as well as landlines and no one has said they can tell the difference. I've had no crackling as others report and no echo from the headset bleeding into the microphone. In short, the audio quality is perfectly fine for my uses.
The one thing I don't like is that I can't turn off that infernal blue blink. When I drive at night with the thing on, I see a blue blink light up the interior of the car.
Conclusion The Jabra BT350 is a good inexpensive headset for casual use.
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